Thursday 21 September 2017

vRealize Network Insight 3.5 NTP Changes

With the release of vRealize Network Insight 3.5 the install and boot now has a mandatory requirement on NTP.  If your installing it and don't point it to a valid NTP source (I used my Domain Controller which technically isn't a valid NTP source) you might see the following when issuing the show-service-status command via the Platform CLI (Default credentials can be found here):

Simply issue the setup command and change the NTP source, I used  Once this change has been made the services will restart and you should see all green when issuing the show-service-status command again:

p.s.  Check out the new PCI Compliance dashboard in version 3.5.

Thanks to Hirdesh Gupta from the Customer Support and Operations team for pointing this out

Monday 4 September 2017

Free NSX Guides

VMware have released three new NSX Guides that are available to download as .pdf's (I've also added the link for the Micro-segmentation Day 1 Guide for completeness):

Original post on can be found here.

Friday 1 September 2017

PowerNSX baked into the NSX Hands on Labs

This year I had the pleasure of  building out some of the VMware NSX labs for VMworld 2017 Hands on Labs. The base pod that I built is currently in use in the following labs:

HOL-1803-01-NET - VMware NSX - Getting Started
HOL-1803-02-NET - VMware NSX - Distributed Firewall and Micro-Segmentation
HOL-1803-03-NET - VMware NSX - Operations and Visibility
HOL-1825-01-NET - VMware NSX - Advanced Consumption
HOL-1825-02-NET - VMWare NSX and SRM - Active-Standby Solution

Anthony Burke (Blog | Twitter) reached out asking if it was possible to have PowerNSX installed in these labs. So, although we don't take advantage of PowerNSX in these labs, it is installed in the labs listed above. If your at VMworld Europe then you can have a play otherwise you will have to wait until they are released publicly.

Tuesday 28 February 2017

North East VMUG - Thursday 23rd March

It's with great pleasure that I announce the first North East VMware User Group event of 2017 and boy is it a big one.  The event will be help on Thursday 23rd March at the Royal Station Hotel from 11:30 to 18:00 in Newcastle.  As always there will be a light lunch, tea & coffee and vBeers in the evening.  The full address and map can be found below:

Royal Station Hotel
Neville St
Newcastle Upon Tyne

Registration is now open

We have some excellent speakers and sponsor and the event is gearing up to be great start to 2017 for the North East VMUG.

Lee Dilworth (twitter)
VMware EMEA Practice Lead – Storage & Availability

“Software Defined Storage Marches On – To say things are busy in the software defined storage side of VMware would be an understatement but the result of all of this activity is thousands of customers enjoying storage flexibility, performance and ease of use that were words once not often used in this area of IT. Join us to learn more and hear how you too can benefit and what other things are just around the corner.”

Atif Qadeer (blog | twitter)
VMware Senior Systems Engineer

“VMware Cloud on AWS; offering you the best of both worlds. Everything you need to know about VMware’s virtualization and management software to seamlessly deploy and manage VMware workloads across all of their on-premises and AWS environments.”

Mark Brookfield (blog | twitter)
VMware PSO Consultant

“Automate all the things! SRM, vRA and Puppet – a hands-on demo”

As always, it wouldn't be possible to put on these events without our sponsors:

Gold Sponsors

Sam Routledge (twitter)
Softcat CTO

“Softcat and our NSX journey -Join us as we share our real-world experience of deploying NSX – the use cases, the pitfalls and the results. We’ll also talk about our success with a ‘zero-trust’ security architecture founded upon NSX micro-segmentation”

Ezat Dayeh (twitter)
Cohesity Senior Systems Engineer

“Beyond backup – making your VMware protection data work for you – Cohesity will give a demonstration of their hyper-converged secondary storage solution that will let you protect, develop and analyse your VM data to improve SLAs and business agility while reducing costs.”

James Smith (twitter)
Morpheus Senior Systems Engineer

“Morpheus Data is a full feature cloud management platform that allows you do deploy into any public or private cloud infrastructure at either VM or Container level.  During the session we will show provisioning of a simple two tier app stack and then deployment of an application onto that stack. We will then look at how we can monitor and control that app through its life cycle.”

Silver Sponsor

We have some great prizes to give away so it's always worth staying to the end as you never know what you might win (actually you do know as all prizes are normally on the table as you register)

Looking forward to catching up with everyone.

Tuesday 3 January 2017

New Home Lab 2017 Edition

Over the last few months I've really been struggling for resources with my Home Lab so figured it was time for an upgrade.  My previous lab comprised of the following:

3 x HP ML310 G8's with 32GB Ram
1 x RouterBOARD RB751
1 x Linksys SRW2016 16 Gigabit Switch
1 x Synology DS412+ (4 x Crucial m4 256GB Sata 3 SSD)

I normally leave all three hosts powered on but during holidays and quite periods I often power off two of them and just keep one permanently on which runs my Remote Desktop Gateway, Domain Controller and Jumpbox VM's.  I wanted a new host that could handle at least 128GB Ram with sufficient CPU to run multiple nested ESXi hosts and NSX Managers / Controllers / Edges etc.

I opted for a Supermicro SYS-5028D-TN4T ( maxed out with 128GB RAM and only running a few local SSD's for storage as the bulk of my critical VM's still run on my Synology DS412+.  This is what the bulk of my testing and demo VM's will be running on.  I also purchased an Intel NUC (NUC6i5SYH) with 16GB Ram for my infrastructure VM's that need to be on 24x7.

Both boxes are currently running ESXi 6.5 and so far they are all performing as expected.  The NUC was a great choice as it's draws very little power and silent.  It wasn't worth the extra money to max it out with 32GB Ram as the bulk of my resource intensive VM's will run on my Supermicro.

Big thanks go out to Tom from Server Factory who sorted me out with a great deal on the Supermicro.